Staff Spotlight: Joe Nickols

A former AHA student, Joe, followed on from his stay in Italy to study Fine Art at Central St. Martins and Japanese Language and History of Art and Archaeology at SOAS, University of London. Never far away from a sketchbook, Joe is happy to get students drawing the sights as well as studying them.

What is your favorite travel memory?

fishing boats in the Aral Sea

I love to travel so there are quite a lot to choose from! The highlight is probably camping with two friends in Moynaq (Uzbekistan) - there the Aral sea has dried up and we were surrounded by fishing boats that had been beached on the sands below!

I have also never been able to see the Milky Way more clearly than there! It really was so beautiful and would recommend it to everyone, but it is not easy to get there!

I also loved going into the mountains in Japan and living with monks in a beautiful temple for a week. I went in winter so there was snow everywhere, which made everything seem incredibly magical and made the onsen (Japanese hot baths) even more enjoyable!

How have you changed/grown since working for your current company?

Absolutely! We get the chance to meet so many fun and fascinating people from all over the world and take them to some of the greatest visual masterpieces in the world and discuss it. Since everyone has their own viewpoint, new questions and ideas are constantly being raised and examined, this leads to exciting conversation and thought.

Every student brings a fresh pair of eyes to everything that we show them and hearing their analysis is incredible.

All the tutors that I get to work with are all passionate about Art and it is great to hear about everyone's specialty.

If you could go on any program that your company offers, which one would you choose and why?

I would definitely go on the Semester Course, hands down!

To have the chance to go all across Europe, to some of the most well respected galleries, collections and museums open to mankind, to be able to eat amazing food, study Italian Language for two weeks and go all across Italy is too much to turn down for me!

The length of the trip would also mean that I would be able to make real connections with the places, the people and the tutors and allow me to make so many incredible memories.

What makes your company unique? When were you especially proud of your team?

AHA is incredibly unique; it teaches you about so many interesting artworks in some of the most vibrant cities in the world whilst allowing freedom for personal growth and development. AHA helps to nurture interests and passions.

Going on AHA made me want to go on to study History of Art at university, a decision I have never looked back from, because the course encouraged me to enjoy art whilst analyzing it and showed me that art is alive and something one can engage with.

The team that I get to work with constantly blows me away! Everyone is so intelligent, kind, and supportive! My team make me proud to work with them every second of every day- there is no one singular moment!

Most importantly, everyone has such a good sense of hard work coupled with great humour that working together is magical!